The San Francisco 49ers selected Trey Lance with the third overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. At the time, the understanding was that they did so with the intention of making him the franchise quarterback.
Unfortunately, over the past year, numerous questions regarding Lance’s readiness to take over the offense have emerged.
Recently NFL insider Chris Simms appeared on Pro Football Talk Live and shed some light on what the 49ers’ concerns with Lance truly are right now.
“Are they scared a little bit?” Simms said. “Of course they are.”
Simms pointed to the Niners retaining Jimmy Garoppolo for as long as they have as evidence of that.
“Anybody you talk to who saw training camp last year,” Simms continued.
“Either that was part of the 49ers staff or when they went and worked with the Los Angeles Chargers and you hear people who witnessed those practices, there had to be concerns coming out of San Francisco early on in the year last year. I know there was. There were too many people who were like, ‘Man, the ball is everywhere; man, he’s not ready yet.’ That’s got to scare them to a degree.”
All that being said, Lance is still an undeniably talented player. Last season, when playing, he completed nearly 70 percent of his passes en route to 12 touchdowns and 4 interceptions.
Is the sample size small? Sure. But the numbers still objectively look better than Garoppolo’s.
— Game 7 (@game7__) May 10, 2022
Would it be nice to see Lance undergo the sort of body transformation Zach Wilson went through or show some kind of legitimate dedication to taking over as the Niners’ franchise quarterback? Of course. But it’s hard not to feel like the criticism has gotten ridiculous at this point.
Lance will have his shot to take over the offense next season. And he’ll either succeed or he’ll fail. But until either scenario happens, he deserves a lot more of the benefit of the doubt than he has gotten up to this point.